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NEWS FEATURE

CATEGORY 5 HURRICANE FELIX PREPARES TO LASH HONDURAS

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Category 5 Hurricane Emily

9.03.07 - Yesterday, Hurricane Felix smashed records by going from a meager Tropical Depression to a dangerous Category 5 Hurricane in just 51 hours. Fortunately, this incredibly rapid intensification produced a rather small storm, especially when compared with Hurricanes Wilma, Katrina, and recently Dean. Felix is now headed on a more southerly path than previously expected, and is forecast to make landfall at the Honduras and Nicaragua border sometime tomorrow with winds of 160 to 175mph. If Felix retains Category 5 status at landfall, 2007 could be the only year with two Category 5 landfalls. Residents of Honduras, Nicaragua, and even Belize need to be aware of the disastrous mudslides that could occur if Felix dumps large amounts of rain. Felix is moving rather fast, however, so it is unlikely that anything over 10 inches will fall.

-A feature by Matt Becker

FACT OF THE WEEK

The Only Tropical Storm To Have Its Name Retired

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Tropical Storm Allison

The first and only name to be retired for a tropical storm was Tropical Storm Allison of 2001. Allison formed from an area of low pressure in the Gulf of Mexico and moved inland over Texas on June 5th with winds of 60 mph. Unexpectedly, after landfall, the storm moved north for a few miles and then stalled over southern Texas before drifting southward. The storm sat in the area for five days, and dumped unprecedented amounts of rain over the Houston metro area. The city of Houston recieved over 30 inches of rain which caused catastrophic flooding. In all, 41 people were killed due to the storm, and over 5.5 Billion dollars in damage was reported. This is the highest damage from any tropical storm in history. The disasterous effects were due to the large amount of moisture that the storm carried, and the fact that the storm happened to stall for five days very near to the large city of Houston, Texas. The name was retired and replaced with Andrea, becoming the first storm to have its name retired. To learn more, read the full article on Tropical Storm Allison in the 2001 Atlantic Season Archives.

PICTURE OF THE DAY

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April 17 - Tropical Storm Ana in 1997

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